THE DYNAMICS OF LOVE
By Pastor Wole Gbogboade
Text: Mark 12: 29-31
Jesus was asked to tell the Pharisees and teachers of the Law the most important of the commandments. The Lord invariably told them reasons for the commandments which are: Love the Lord with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength. The second one is to love your neighbour as yourself.
Manifestations of love: If you follow the commandments from your heart, you will love God and you will not hurt your neighbour (parents, family, leaders and fellow human beings). The end of the law is love; not just to observe rules and regulations. The love of God and our neighbour will breed good and godly relationship between us and God as well as our neighbours.
How come the Pharisees said He had spoken well yet, they didn’t love Him nor follow Him despite the fact that they claimed to be serving God and they were the custodians of the Torah (word of God from Genesis to Malachi). In the Church today, many Christians either misinterpret the concept of biblical love to suit their own selfish purpose or there is outright ignorance of the word love or confusing worldly and biblical meaning of love altogether. For the avoidance of doubt, Christians need to know the different types of love:
1- Eros: The Greek word means love by natural or emotional feelings. A kind of affection or feelings a man has toward the opposite sex.
2- Philia or Phileo: Brotherly love. This is the kind of love among blood relations like brethren of the same mother and father or relatives.
3- Storge: Love for things. It can be sports, money, gold, silver or town. Etc.
4- Agape: This is God’s kind of love. Agape is sacrificial love. The others are determined by flesh, emotion while Agape is from God’s perspective. The others are usually beneficial to the person’s soul but, agape is always drawing you to give: spirit, soul, financial or material. “For God so love the world, He gave…” John 3:16. Agape moves you to give sacrificially without expecting reward from the recipients; you give as unto the Lord. God never said, you will reap where you sow instead, He said you will reap what you sow. Your service is as unto the Lord not man, not man pleasing but God glorifying. Col. 3:17, 23-24
Biblical Love: Love in the kingdom is hinged on obedience to the word of God.
“And this is what demonstrates love: that we live according to God’s commandments. Just as you have heard from the beginning what he commanded, you must live by it.” 2John 1:6 (ISV)
“Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Messiah has been born from God, and everyone who loves the parent also loves the child. This is how we know that we love God’s children: we love God and keep his commandments.” 1 John 5:1-2 (ISV)
Love therefore has boundary. Love operates within the ambit of God’s command. Therefore, as God’s children, we can only love what God loves and approves. We love to do only what is pleasing to God. 1 Cor. 13:7 Love hates evil but loves the truth. The attribute and character of God is to love the truth and hate evil.
Love is based on knowledge. Love develops through bible based relationship. Jesus only called His disciples friends only after they have been well informed of who He is, what He beliefs and does.
“You are my friends if you do what i command. I no longer call you servants….Instead, i have called you friends, for everything that i learned from my Father, i have made it known to you.” John 15:14-15 NIV.
“And this is my prayer, that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight.” Phil. 1:9 NIV
Love operate on the truth of Gods word. And we must tell ourselves the truth in love. Eph. 4:15
JESUS is our example. He exhibited complete love for the Father by His total obedience; the Father’s work and His command:
The Father’s command: John 5:19, 30-31. John 14:31
The Father’s work: John 4:34, Mark 1:35-38
The Father’s word: 1 John 5:7 (KJV), John 8:18, 28, John 10:32. John 14:10-11
Jesus so loved the Father that He had a mind-set of absolute obedience towards the Father even, He obeyed His Father to death.Phil. 2:5-8.
Jesus was tempted at every point: spirit, soul and body by the devil but, He didn’t budge because of His relationship with the Father. His love for the Father would not let Him listen and do the devil’s bidding. Hence, at every point, Jesus always overcome the devil and confound him despite of all his antics toward Him. Matt. 4:4-11. Heb. 4:15
He said to His disciples, “…for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me. But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do…” John 14:30-31.
Truly, in this world there are troubles but, in Christ we overcome the world. The love of God made the Father to send the Son to come and save us. John 3:16
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 (KJV)
But, Jesus overcome the world through love. Love is a great weapon that can and will always be used to destroy the armoury of the devil. The Bible says,
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7
In conclusion, as we submit ourselves to God and we know that God is Love then, we can through the love of God overcome the enemy of our soul. How? By our obedience to His commands, our love for the word of God and for the people. And as we live the word, it attracts God’s love and connects us in intimate relationship with the Holy Spirit. This makes us to war in righteousness and we become warriors of righteousness and not just beating about the bush. 2 Cor. 10:3-5, Rom. 12:17-21
“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love him, because he first loved us.” 1 John 4:18-19
Word of Salvation Publication